Originally Posted by donlphi
I don't want to take away from your comment, as I think it's a true statement, but I am really curious about what everybody wants to multitask.
maybe you weren't around during the Mac Plus days, but once you have real robust multitasking you will never go back. It just allows for an ease of use you can't get by any other method.
I can only think of a couple but I don't see a "super necessity" for it:
that sort of logic can be extended to smart phones themselves. Are they even a nessecity, many would say no.
On iPhone it is however a necessity as Apple uses multitasking in a privledged manner. The problem is the lack of user app multitasking.
Listen to Pandora (some other radio app) while doing something else (checking e-mail, browsing the web, etc.).
I have a number of radio apps installed and honestly use them very little. But that is me, I just don't listen to the radio much at all. I can think of a number of good ideas that ideally would have multitasking support available to them. Some examples;
1. A GPS tracking app. That collect your position every five minutes or so.
2. Health monitoring. Great for workouts, just slap a bluetooth patch on your body some place to capture heart rate and other info.
3. execise equipment monitoring. Log your performance, distance traveled, intensity and so forth for bike riders and other outdoor activities. Apparently Apple has something up it's sleeves here.
4. Communications with lab instruments / meters. The classic usage here is to monitor a temp at a fixed rate. That could be minutes or hours, the idea being to collect for later processing.
5. Document creation from multiple types of data, each piece created via it's own app. The classic example being a spread sheet with embedded art.
6. Automatic position notification. An app sends a predefined txt to someone based on their approximate location.
7. It would be incredibly nice to be able to flip between the app of your choice and the calculator of your choice without the program reloads. This is especially useful for programmable caculators with advanced features. In fact the idea of a caculator is so useful that it ought to be always running.
8. It is very useful to have mail and the web browser running at the same time. Especially when so much E-Mail these days comes with links for the web browser to open. Again this just eliminates the open and close cycles. The thing is on a bad day you may haveten or twenty E-Mails with links to follow.
9. Apps and media dowloads in background. Why should you have to sit in an app waiting for a movie to download. Do it in background! WiFi or cell I don't care, the idea is to do something useful while your purchase downloads.
10. Better stop watch apps
11. Audio logging. Say you are at a lecture and you want to record it, a back ground app could keep on recording no matter what else the iPhone was doing. This sort of feature could be useful for reporters trying to cover a story while other things are going on requiring the iPhone. Big market here if the right optimized microphone can be had.
Those are just a few things that don't involve listening to radio.
How many other things can you do at the same time on a phone?
As long as there is an SDK and support for Multitasking that question can not be answered. The issue is the biomass behind the XCode window trying to implement his new idea. As long as the platform is viable there will be new apps some of which will run in background.
Also I have to say the issue that is always brought up about battery life is BS. The user of the iPhone is intelligent enough to avoid battery draining apps when required.